Brand. As marketers, we hear this word everyday. But what exactly is a brand? Is it a logo? Product? Messaging?
At Webolutions, we define a brand as the sum of all experiences with a company or organization. These experiences include every interaction – whether it’s viewing an ad, visiting a location or speaking with customer service on the phone. Every. Single. Interaction.
So while a company may decide what they want their brand to be, it is really the customers who determine the brand based on their experiences.
Want to improve or change your brand? You’re going to need a lot more than just a new product or logo. With so many aspects in a brand, how do you decide where to focus first?
Here’s our list of the most important parts:
It should come as no surprise that employees are at the center of a brand. After all, they are engaging with your customers every day and serve as brand ambassadors. Any interaction a customer has with an employee, good or bad, will play a part in defining your overall brand.
That’s why it is imperative to hire the right employees and provide them with brand training and empowerment – from custodians to the C suite.
- Whether intentional or not, your organization creates an experience every day. From the parking lot to your décor to the actual process of delivering your product or service. And more often than not, a positive experience results from the little things. So how do you ensure your micro-moments mimic your brand? We recommend experience mapping – beginning with a potential customer’s first interaction all the way to the final payment.
Take a step back and analyze the journey, making note of each detail. What will they see? What will we say? How do we want them to feel? Look for ways to insert a “wow” experience that matches your brand identity. Need ideas? Check out 7 Ways to Create an Experience for Your Business.
- How you engage with your customers plays a major role in their perception of your brand. This includes more formal communications like emails and brochures, but also less formal communication, like texts and one-on-one interactions. What kind of emotion and messaging are you invoking? Excitement? Relaxation? Appreciation?
In order to maintain consistent messaging, we recommend creating a brand standards guide. This should address the standard for communication tone, vocabulary and channels.
Why are you in business? What is your purpose? And the answer should not be “to sell XX product or service.” For example, Apple’s “why” is innovation. Cocoa Cola’s “why” is bringing people together. Determining the bigger reason behind your company may not be easy, but once you determine it, all of the other pieces – like assets, communication, products and employees will come together.
Need some help creating your “why”? We love this Ted Talk by Simon Sinek.
- Your assets like logos, colors, website and other creative collateral all play a big role in creating your brand image. These often are a part of the subconscious experience, creating powerful associations for your brand. For instance, the color red can invoke a sense of power, urgency or even increase hunger.
While your logo won’t be your “brand,” it will often be the image most associated with it. It will be on your letterhead, your product, invoices, etc. So it’s important it matches all the other elements. Before embarking on the creation of brand assets, it is essential to understand your audience, your “why” and the experience you want to create.
- A brand is the sum of every interaction that is had with a company
- To change or improve your brand, you must take a holistic approach
- Top aspects making up a brand include employees, micro-experiences, communications, company “why”, and creative assets
- All pieces of the brand must work together to convey consistent messaging
These are the top five elements that encompass a brand, but there are dozens more. If you’re considering a rebrand or simply interested in improving your existing brand, Webolutions can help. We provide a holistic approach, ensuring each aspect of your brand works together to grow your business. Contact us today at 303.300.2640.